Category: Governance

Sleepless in the Age of Trump

What we know about how great power wars start should make us terrified of President Trump. I don’t sleep at night, because of Donald Trump. This is unusual. I wasn’t kept awake at night by George W. Bush or Bill Clinton. Nor do I lose sleep over hot-blooded authoritarians such as Vladimir Putin, Kim Jong… Read more »

Democratic Intervention?

Donald Trump has made statements sceptical of military interventions in the Middle East. This is perhaps a rare piece of good news. Military intervention as a means of building democracy has once again become a hot topic. The Norwegian government has been criticized due to the consequences of the intervention in Libya. Hillary Clinton has… Read more »

The Right to Decide: Exit and Basque Self-Determination

Five years ago, the Basque militant group ETA (Basque Homeland and Freedom) announced a unilateral and permanent cessation of operations. Since then, the disappearance of political violence has given rise to a new debate on Basque nationhood: more inclusive, more open, more civic, and at the same time stronger in its affirmation of the legitimacy… Read more »

Syria Travellers and Security Threats

Foreign fighters returning from Syria have emerged as a looming security threat in many European countries, so also in Norway. As well as preventive measures against radicalization and mobilization by the Islamic State, there have been calls for the withdrawal of citizenship and deportation of returned foreign fighters. This raises a number of questions. Are Norwegians more secure if we send potential terrorists… Read more »

The ‘Sovereign’ according to Ola Tunander

On Friday 27 May 2016, PRIO celebrated Ola Tunander’s 30-year academic career with a seminar on ‘Sovereignty, Subs and PSYOPS’, and a reception. The celebration was, of course, focused on Ola and his work, spanning topics from the geopolitics and organic state theory of Rudolf Kjellén to the 27 October 1981 ‘Whiskey on the Rocks’… Read more »

Is it Strange that Dictators Hold Elections?

Why do dictators hold elections that merely play to the gallery? On 11 October, Alexander Lukashenko was re-elected as president of Belarus with an impressive 84 per cent share of the vote. The election was anything but free and fair. According to the OSCE, Belarusian law makes it impossible for the will of the people… Read more »